Samsung’s CEO revealed that the company is aiming to make foldable devices cheaper.
Samsung seems to have made it through 2020 without too much trouble, and with the year almost over, the company has started thinking about its path to 2021. In a blog post published this morning, Samsung’s head of smartphone manufacturing recalled the past year, but — more importantly — he also confirmed several key updates to the company’s mobile strategy in the new year, Engadget writes.
Perhaps his most striking confirmation is that Samsung plans to move some of the Galaxy Note’s “most beloved features” to other devices in its Galaxy lineup. It’s the most important indication that one of the company’s upcoming flagship Galaxy S21 smartphones will work with Samsung’s beautiful S Pen, an introduction that has long been rumored in enthusiast circles and could potentially mean the end of the high-performance Galaxy Note lineup.
Coincidentally, Roh’s remarks coincide with reports that the premium Galaxy S21 Ultra will have S Pen support, but will not contain the S Pen inside — users must decide for themselves whether to buy it. If true, this is a much less elegant solution than what the Galaxy Note offers, so the praise for Samsung’s groundbreaking phablet lineup may be a bit premature.
Roh also confirmed Samsung’s plans to expand its number of foldable devices, which only makes sense given the company’s 2020 momentum. Back in February — at one of the last launch events of the year — Samsung announced the Galaxy Z Flip, a foldable clamshell that proved to be more powerful and affordable than the Motorola Razr.
Then, in September, Samsung released the Galaxy Z Fold 2, which fixed many of the problems the first-generation Galaxy Fold had and debuted with great success. In 2021, the company is reportedly planning to create four new foldable devices, indicating an even clearer desire to make these devices the future of smartphones.
Samsung has established itself as one of the leaders in the foldable device race, but one thing has held back more widespread adoption so far: price. Currently, even the cheapest foldable phone usually costs as much as a premium flagship phone, but that could soon change. Roh highlighted that the company aims to make foldable devices “more affordable” in 2021, suggesting that Samsung will release at least one cheaper model to spur growth in the coming months.
While this is the first time Samsung has publicly acknowledged these plans, they are unfortunately rather skimpy on details. Nevertheless, we won’t have to wait long for the right answers: Samsung will hold a virtual presentation at CES 2021, and all signs point to a real(albeit online) presentation on the last day of the show.